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The Getty Alchemy Collection

Materials from the Research Library, Getty Research Institute located in Los Angeles, CA.

The Getty Alchemy Collection includes books from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries dealing with the art and science of alchemy. Its core is formed by the Manly Palmer Hall collection, acquired in 1995 from the estate of the Los Angeles theosophist, who founded the Philosophical Research Society in Los Feliz. Originally acquired for its contribution to the history of visual symbolism, alchemy is now also recognized as the key to the history of materiality in the arts.

In addition to their influential allegorical and fantastic imagery, Alchemical texts record recipes and techniques for applications across the visual arts, including pigments, dyes, metal-alloys, and effects in glass, as well as the acidic washes of etching and lithography. Alchemy, called “the great art” in Medieval Europe, also speaks to essential ideas about human creativity and the relationship between Art and Nature which have infused the history of art from antiquity to the present day.


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Brief extracts in Latin from writers on alchemy, with commentary in German. Based on Reusner's Pandora of 1582. See Hogart
Topic: Alchemy
The initials E. K., which appear throughout the text, stand for Edward Kelly, Dee's associate
Topics: Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor, 1552-1612, Stefan Batory, King of Poland, 1533-1586, Spiritualism,...
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Fludd, Robert, 1574-1637; Bry, Johann Theodor de, 1561-1623?; Merian, Matthaeus, 1593-1650
texts
eye 10,454
favorite 63
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Only the 1st Tractatus of t. 1 has general title. The other parts have individual t.p.'s: Tractatus secundus, De natvrae simia seu technica macrocosmi historia. Oppenheimio : Aere Iohan-Theodori de Bry : Typis Hieronymi Galleri, 1618; Tomvs secvndvs De svpernatvrali, naturali, praeternaturali et contranaturali microcosmi historia, in tractatus tres distributa. Oppenhemij : Impensis Iohannis Theodori de Bry : Typis Hieronymi Galleri, 1619; Tomi secvndi, tractatus primi, sectio secunda, De...
Topics: Cosmology, Arithmetic, Geometry, Music theory, Drawing, Military art and science, Astrology,...
Imprint varies. Vol. 2: London : Printed for Henry Brome, 1663. Vol. 3: London : Printed by J.C. for R. Broom, at the signe of the Gun in Ivy-Lane, 1663
Topics: Occultism, Rosicrucians, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
Library has v.1
Topics: Occultism, Alchemy, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Salmon, William, 1644-1713; Fabre, Pierre-Jean, d. ca. 1650; A. and J. Churchill (Booksellers : London, England); Nicholson, John, d. ca. 1717
texts
eye 6,056
favorite 23
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Pages 225-300 lacking in pagination
Topics: Art, Portrait painting, Medicine, Palmistry, Alchemy
Pagination, Book I: [128] (the 1st blank), 19 [i.e. 37], [1] (blank) p. Book II: [16] (the last blank), 169, [1] (blank) p. Book III: [8] (the last blank), 226 [i.e. 254] p. Book IV: [6], 83, [1] (blank) p. Book V: [6], 145, [1] (blank) p. Book VI: [10] (the last blank), 55, [31] p. (last leaf blank)
Topics: Medicine, Rosicrucians
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Salmon, William, 1644-1713; Hermes, Trismegistus. De lapidis philosophici secreto. English; Jabir ibn Hayyan. Summa perfectionis. English; Artephius. Liber secretus artis occultae. English; Flamel, Nicolas, d. 1418. Figures hierogliphiques. English; Bacon, Roger, 1214?-1294. Radix mundi. English; Bacon, Roger, 1214?-1294. Speculum alchemiae. English; Ripley, George, d. 1490? Medulla alchimiae. English; Khalid ibn Yazid al-Umawi, 7th cent. Secreta alchymiae. English
texts
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First section of Book 1 contains receipts and advice on treating diseases. The remainder of the work consists of translated alchemical treatises. See Hogart
Topics: Alchemy, Medicine
First published by Luca Jennis (Frankfort, 1625); cf. Hogart
Topic: Alchemy
The Getty Alchemy Collection
texts
eye 5,447
favorite 7
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Section 2 has special t.p
Topics: Biblical cosmology, Cosmology, Occultism
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Ashmole, Elias, 1617-1692; Cross, Thomas, fl. 1632-1682; Vaughan, Robert, 17th cent; Goddard, John, fl. 1645-1671
texts
eye 5,349
favorite 14
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No more published
Topic: Alchemy
The authorship was attributed to Barrett as early as 1824, but is not certain. Cf. Hogart
Topics: Alchemists, Alchemy, Alchemy
By Arthur Dee. Published in Latin at Basle, 1629. Translated into English by Elias Ashmole under the anagram of James Hasolle. See Hogart
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Topic: Alchemy
In three parts
Topics: Chemistry, Alchemy, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric, Materia medica
Vols. 1-2 paged continuously
Topics: Heydon, John, b. 1629, Rosicrucians, Occultism, Alchemy, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
Frontispiece is engraved port. of author, signed in the plate: T. Cross Sculpsit. Also, woodcut diagrams, including author's horoscope at p. 98
Topics: Occultism, Rosicrucians, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
In 5 parts and 4 addition sections, each with special t.p
Topics: Alchemy, Medicine
"Philosophical and chymical experiments of the famous philosopher Raymund Lully", p. [97]-166, has individual title page with imprint: London : Printed by James Cottrel, 1657
Topics: Alchemy, Chemistry, Medicine
Actual publication date 1651; see BM, ESTC
Topic: Alchemy
Translator's preface signed: G.C
Topics: Llull, Ramon, 1232?-1316, Alchemy
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Merian, Matthaeus, 1593-1650, engraver; Grossschedel von Aicha, Johann Baptist, author; Brahe, Tycho, 1546-1601, printer
texts
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Three sheets joined on linen mount
Topics: Alchemy, Zodiac, Magic
Each treatise has special t.p. All are dated 1683 except the last, The tomb of Semiramis, which is dated 1684 like the main t.p. The first treatise also has an added t.p. in Latin, and text in English and Latin on opposite pages
Topic: Alchemy
Pref., dedication, and author's statement on p. 107 bear dates in Jan., 1564, the year of the 1st ed. 3rd ed. appeared in 1591. See Hogart
Topics: Alchemy, Cabala, Magic
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Cooper, William, fl. 1668-1688; Helvetius, Johann Friedrich, d. 1709. Vitulus aureus, quem mundus adorat & orat. English; Glauber, Johann Rudolf, 1604-1670. Novum lumen chimicum. English
texts
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In contrast to the 1673 ed., the present ed. includes a 2nd and 3rd pt. to the Catalogue of chymical books, together with an errata list for the 1st pt. (p. [14], last sequence of pagination) and a general t.p. for all 3 pts. The imprint on this general t.p. reads: Collected by Will. Cooper, Bookseller ... London, Printed in the year 1675. See BM
Topics: Alchemy, Alchemy, Chemistry
The Getty Alchemy Collection
texts
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Includes 4 engraved plates depicting alchemical apparatus
Topics: Antimony, Antimony, Alchemy
Published in 1614 at Oppenheim and also at London (T. Creede). Reissued in 1625 at London with cancel letterpress t.p., title: De hieroglyphicis aegyptiorvm libri sex (Prostat apud Societatem Londinensem). See Yale Alchemy, 84
Topic: Alchemy
Signatures: A B-L
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Topics: Magic, Occultism
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Vaughan, Thomas, 1622-1666
texts
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Eugenius Philalethes is Thomas Vaughan's pseudonym
Topics: Alchemy, Rosicrucians, Magic, Occultism
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Ashmole, Elias, 1617-1692; Everard, John, 1575?-1650?
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favorite 5
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Marginal notes by John Everard; see p. [5]
Topic: Alchemy
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Sedziwój, Micha, ca. 1556-ca. 1646; Paracelsus, 1493-1541. De natura rerum; Dorn, Gerhard, 16th cent. Dictionarium Paracelsi; French, John, 1616-1657
texts
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Based on the 1650 ed
Topics: Alchemy, Sulfur
Engraved allegorical frontispiece signed in the plate: W.F. [i.e. William Faithorne]
Topic: Alchemy
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Rosencreutz, Christian; Foxcroft, E
texts
eye 3,217
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comment 1
Die chymische Hochzeit first appeared in 1616; see Hogart
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Topic: Rosicrucians
The 1st publication of this work. Cf. Hogart
Topics: Biblical cosmology, Cosmology, Occultism
Hebrew at head of title
Topics: Rosicrucians, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric, Occultism
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Sedziwój, Micha, ca. 1556-ca. 1646; Paracelsus, 1493-1541. De natura rerum; Dorn, Gerhard, 16th cent. Dictionarium Paracelsi; French, John, 1616-1657
texts
eye 3,072
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First published Prague, 1604. This English translation by John French is the first of any work by Sedziwój
Topics: Alchemy, Sulfur, Chemistry
Title on leaf [10] recto. Leaf [1] recto has title for introd.: Introductorium magne artis generalis reuerendissumi doctoris illuminati magistri Raymundi Lullij ad omnes scientias vtilissimum
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Topics: Philosophy, Medieval, Theology, Numerology
The compilation Aureum vellus, including works by Trimosin and others, was first published in 1598 (Tractatus I-III) and 1604 (Tractatus IV-V); cf. Sudhoff. The present work is a reissue of a 1602 French translation (with additions by the translator) of the 1st part of Tractatus III, entitled Splendor solis; cf. Hogart. Some copies, otherwise identical, have the date 1613; cf. Brunet, NUC
Topic: Alchemy
The French translation of The ancient war of the knights, as well as the authorship of A dialogue between Eudoxus and Pyrophilus and of A letter to the true disciples of Hermes, are attributed to Saint-Didier; see Hogart, BM. All three are here translated into English from Le triomphe hermétique (Amsterdam : H. Wetstein, 1689 and 1699). Uralter Ritter-Krieg, the German original of the Ancient war of the knights, appeared at Leipzig, 1604
Topics: Uralter Ritter-Krieg, Alchemy
Library's copy inscribed in brown ink on t.p.: Walter Granger
Topics: Christian life, Mysticism
The Getty Alchemy Collection
texts
eye 2,752
favorite 8
comment 0
Translator's dedication, p. [3], signed: Edvvard Stephens
Topics: Alchemy, Fire, Salt
Errata, p. [6]
Topic: Occultism
Signatures: A (a)-(c) d B-E
Topic: Rosicrucians
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Thor., George; Thor., George. Zoroaster's cave; Pontanus, Johannes Isacius, 1571-1639. Epistola de lapide philosophorum
texts
eye 2,450
favorite 7
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1st published as Cheiragogia heliana, a manuduction to the philosopher's magical gold (London : Humphrey Moseley, 1659); that title is the caption title on p. 1 of the present ed. Cf. Hogart
Topic: Alchemy
Medicina diastatica originally published in Latin (Jena, 1629)
Topics: Medicine, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Croll, Oswald, ca. 1560-1609; Pinnell, Henry; Paracelsus, 1493-1541
texts
eye 2,305
favorite 6
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Signatures: A a B-O P 2A-2D 2E (Leaves A3,5 signed A2,4)
Topics: Paracelsus, 1493-1541, Philosophy, Medieval, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
Eugenius Philalethes is the pseudonym of Thomas Vaughan
Topics: Occultism, Alchemy
The 2nd ed., the 1st having appeared the preceding year. See Hogart
Topics: Pharmacy, Therapeutics, Signatures (Medicine)
The Getty Alchemy Collection
by Helmont, Jean Baptiste van, 1577-1644; Charleton, Walter, 1619-1707
texts
eye 1,963
favorite 5
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The largest of the 3 treatises, that on wounds, is a translation of De magnetica vulnerum naturali et legitima curatione, originally published in Paris, 1621. See Hogart
Topics: Medicine, Wounds and injuries, Wine and wine making, Theological anthropology
The Getty Alchemy Collection
texts
eye 1,856
favorite 7
comment 0
Pages 26-27, 30-31, 34-35, 37-39 incorrectly numbered 12, 9, 8, 21, 20, 17, 27, 16, 25, respectively
Topic: Alchemy
The Getty Alchemy Collection
texts
eye 1,805
favorite 3
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Dedication signed: Ioh. Valentinus Andreae (p. [9], 1st sequence of pagination)
Topic: Christian life
Errata, p. 124
Topic: Alchemy
The Getty Alchemy Collection
texts
eye 1,669
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Signatures: A B-I K
Topic: Rosicrucians
Hogart, R. Alchemy
Topics: Gold, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric
A reply to Henry More's The second lash of Alazonomastix (Wing M2677)
Topics: More, Henry, 1614-1687, Occultism, Alchemists
Gift of the C.G. Jung Institute of Los Angeles
Topic: Alchemy
Latin translation of: Doctor Fludds answer unto M. Foster, or, The squeesing of parson Foster's sponge; published in 1631, shortly after the appearance in the same year of Foster's Hoplocrisma-Spongus, or, A sponge to wipe away the weapon-salve. Cf. Hogart
Topics: Foster, William, 1591-1643, Medicine, Magic, mystic, and spagiric, Medicine
First published in Latin at Frankfurt, 1742. This 1st English translation by John Campbell. See Hogart
Topics: Health, Longevity, Rejuvenation, Occultism